Child sex-abuse charges against former trooper dropped

CHESTERFIELD, VA (WWBT) - A Chesterfield County prosecutor today withdrew child sex abuse charges against a former Virginia State Police captain after concluding that the young girl would be unable to testify against him.

Commonwealth's Attorney Duncan Minton announced the decision at a hearing today. Min ton said the decision not to proceed in a trial against Edward L. Hope Jr., 53, of Goochland County was made after consulting with the girl's family and therapist.

The abuse stemmed from alleged daily sexual encounters over a three-year span that began when the girl, now 13, was in second grade. The arrest warrant stated the alleged offenses took place between September 2002 and September 2003. He was charged with a felony count of forcible sodomy in January 2009.

Min ton said there is no statute of limitations on felony cases in Virginia, so there's still a possibility the girl may be able to testify in the future.

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